2023 Winter

Winter 2023 - 1

Winter 2023 - 2 magazine WINTER 2023 photography CAT FORD-COATES SARAH HOAG creative director MYRA RAY editor ERIN DANIELS publisher SARAH BENKEN FOUSHEE contributing writers BIRD MEJIA CHEF RENATE MOORE KRISTINA RODRIGUEZ LISA FONTAINE NICOLE PETERNEL SOUAD DREYFUS from the PUBLISHER Happy 2023 fellow high-achievers! I’m so excited to share the first issue of the year with you. Inside you’ll learn about our new expansion plans and meet some of the dynamic women of Southwest Florida. You’ll also hear from Bernadette Pello, our Tampa Bay Market Director in our brand new series, Experience the Power of KNOW - where members share stories of how KNOW has impacted their lives. It’s such a great read! With each issue, this being our 4th, I’m more impressed than ever with our team and their creative talents. This issue I tossed the reins to our Creative Director, Myra Ray and Editor, Erin Daniels. This is their labor of love… and I love that I am able to empower and equip women from all over, including on our team, to dream and execute. Enjoy. And cheers to 2023! Sarah Benken Foushee Publisher of KNOW Magazine & CEO of KNOWWomen, LLC

Winter 2023 - 3 advertisers WINTER 2023 1.........................................Industrious 36 . ...........................Seen by KNOW 36 . ...............Real Life with Mercedes 42 . ................... Sparkle Hustle Grow 42 . ............................Charity Charms 49 . ................ Open Arms Surrogacy from the EDITOR In each issue, we have an award or recognition to honor a specific group of women. This Winter, rather than an award, we decided to put a spotlight on the KNOWWomen of Southwest Florida. After the calamitous Hurricane Ian hit last fall, we saw these women have to go through an intense and devastating period, but we also witnessed true strength and an honest meaning of community. Flip through the pages to not only learn about these women and their businesses, but hear from Marilyn Santiago and Talisha Faber and their initiative to put boots to the ground and feed thousands in need during the hurricane aftermath. Every issue released becomes my new favorite, and this one is no different. I had the opportunity to interview four incredible women and learn their journeys. Mollie Suarez, the feature in our cover story, offers true vulnerability and exudes dedication in everything she does. Hear her story of becoming a teen mom, discovering her love for gems, and turning that into what is now Westshore Diamond. I also got to sit down with Bernadette Pello, KNOW Tampa Market Director, to discuss how she experiences The Power of KNOW. Witness the countless amount of connections and collaborations Bernadette has developed through her KNOW community. As always, we are bringing you the expertise to take your business to the next level. Learn five ways to drive profitability through publicity from Nicole Peternel of Rein Communications. In addition, Kristina Rodrigues teaches you how to build your wealth while focusing on what is most important to you. Enjoy the rich stories in this issue! ErinDaniels Editor of KNOW Magazine To inquire about advertising in a future issue of KNOW Magazine or to receive a media kit, email: hello@ theknowwomen.com connect @theknowwomen subscribe theknowwomen.com hello@theknowwomen.com ©2023 Know Women, LLC. all rights reserved.

Winter 2023 - 4 CULTURE 6 SCENE See the next-level experiences put on by KNOWWomen across the country 10 LEADING LADY A Woman to KNOW: Mollie Suarez; CEO and Founder of Westshore Diamond 14 HAPPENINGS Be in the KNOW about all events happening in February, March, and April. NEWSWORTHY 16 COMMUNITY OUT OF CATASTROPHE KNOWWomen leading the clean up after local devastation caused by Hurricane Ian 18 SPECIAL FEATURE Women to KNOW and Support in Southwest Florida SOCIETE 27 PROTECT YOUR ASSETS Build Your Wealth and Discover Your Worth with Kristia Rodriguez 28 INTRODUCING SPARKLE HUSTLE GROW KNOW partners with women-focused subscription box company 30 ENHANCE YOUR BRAND Five better ways to drive profitability through publicity from PR Powerhouse, Nicole Peternel 31 WELLBEING How Cacao Can Heal Your Feminine Wound by Bird Mejia 32 Q&A: MEET THE WOMEN OF KNOW Get to know Souad Dreyfus of Open Arms Surrogacy CON T E N T S 38 18

Winter 2023 - 5 EXPERIENCE 34 THE POWER OF KNOW Queen of Community, Bernadette Pello, shares how she leverages the KNOW community from coast to coast 37 THE FUTURE OF KNOW KNOWWomen continues to evolve. See what changes are leading the expansion of community for ambitious women HOME + LIFE 38 INTERIOR TRENDS Trends you can expect to see in 2023 from Interior Designer, Lisa Fontaine TRAVEL 40 FEATURED CITY Get to KNOW the Queen City. Find new spots to eat, drink, and play in Charlotte FOOD + BEV 43 FOOD Mango Tango Salsa- A fan favorite when eaten with butterflied shrimp, shrimp cocktail, or chips. 44 DRINK Ginger Refresher- A healthy and homemade ginger beer from Celebrity Chef Renate Moore CON T E N T S 48 44 STYLE + BEAUTY 45 FASHION High fashion for high caliber women. View new styles from Deanna Smith, Founder of Halsey St. & Co 48 WHAT’S IN YOUR BAG? Award-winning photographer, Cat Ford-Coates, shares her new photography bag and her must haves she takes to every shoot

Winter 2023 - 6 C U L T U R E scene Charlotte Vol 4 Launch

Winter 2023 - 7 C U L T U R E scene Tampa Vol 5 Launch

Winter 2023 - 8 C U L T U R E scene FOCU$ED: PR and Media | Charlotte, Tampa, Phoenix

Winter 2023 - 9 C U L T U R E scene Sparkle by KNOW Phoenix KNOW Raleigh Mixer

Winter 2023 - 10 C U L T U R E leading lady Image by Cat Ford-Coates

Winter 2023 - 11 A WOMAN TO K NOW MOL L I E SUAREZ By Erin Daniels You will be successful if you are doing something you are completely passionate about. Passion is such an overused word, but just being completely enthralled by it so much that it wakes you up. It lights the fire inside of you. If you have that, then you will be successful because I believe it is your purpose. The CEO and Founder ofWestshore Diamond, Mollie Suarez, first started learning about diamonds in an untraditional way. Usually a family profession, those with jewelry stores send their children to school for a gemologist certification. The roadmap was different for Mollie. Beginning the journey of motherhood during her senior year of high school, Mollie began searching for engagement rings and got married when her daughter was one. “I walked into a Zales store to look for engagement rings, and I must have visited the store a lot because they kind of got to know me and they said, “You should work here.” I’m like, “What?” Mollie took the job. She wanted to know she could support her daughter and this was a big deal. “I got to dress in suits. I was doing sales and talking to people. I just fit that role and it worked really well for me” At this time, Mollie was going to college; however, her job at zales was more interesting. She was always asking questions about diamonds and colored stones and the jeweler at her store told her she should become a gemologist. He explained to her what it was, how she would become certified and be paid more, and that there were a lot of gemologist jobs C U L T U R E leading lady MEET HER AT KNOW SUMMIT 2023

Winter 2023 - 12 And remember, the only reason why someone else is doing it is because they are brave, not because they’re better. C U L T U R E leading lady in the industry. “So I looked in the back of a trade magazine and they had classified ads, job postings. It said Gemologist- $50,000 and this was in 1998. And I’m like hell yes.” This is where Mollie’s strong faith begins to play a huge part in her journey. Her parents grew up in Tampa, Florida and ended up moving to Southern California that year. She went with her parents and lived in Temecula which happened to be very close to the best school in the world for gemology, the Gemology Institute of America. “The best school was just 30 minutes from the city I just moved to. And then I found out Zales would pay for it.” She describes this as such a hard time in her life as she was trying to figure everything out, but says “I feel super lucky that I got to witness and use my faith and see it manifest at such a young age because I truly found my purpose that year. Every day I’m so happy about it still to this day because I’ve achieved so much.” From there on, Mollie’s grit and dedication to the industry opened many opportunities for herself. “I’ve worked at Tiffany & Co. I’ve worked at Home Shopping Network. When I went to school, they hired me after I graduated to work in their laboratory creating their day reports.” Afterward, she moved back to Tampa and was able to name her price and get a job anywhere. She was working for Tiffany & Co selling diamonds and was the only gemologist in the store; however, the mall hours were really difficult for her daughter who was now six. Mollie had to find a way to create a successful work-life balance, a valued pillar in her life to this day. This is when she took a leap of faith, quit her job, bought a microscope and the necessary software, and started her own jewelry appraisal business. She was working out of one main store, but was still an independent contractor and had her own client base. Five years pass by and that store ends up closing and propelling Mollie into the next season of her jewelry career. She opened her own office. This big transition allowed her to now offer all services in one place and that is how Westshore Diamond was created. She still offered appraisal services, but was now able to sell jewelry as well. “A lot of people that do appraising think they can’t do both because of conflict of interest, and that’s not the case. They come to you because they trust what you’re saying, and if you ever break that trust, you won’t have a business. So naturally, IGS, my appraisal customers become Westshore Diamond customers.” Westshore Diamond was established in 2011 and today is a premier diamond concierge for engagement rings. They also offer fine jewelry, jewelry concierge services, appraisals, insurance replacement, repairs, and cleanings. Right now, Mollie’s focus is on growing some, but more importantly maintaining her business model. “My business model is a very personal approach to engagement rings, and if I start now hiring salespeople it’s not the same. I also never intended my business to run my life. I don’t want to grow into multiple stores. I don’t want to grow where I can’t be present in every transaction.” This structure allows Mollie to have a healthy balance in her life. She has weekends off, works by appointment only, and doesn’t have to sacrifice time with her family. When asked what the future of Westshore Diamond looks like, Mollie would love for Natalie, their Creative Director and Jewelry Specialist, to become a gemologist and become the next powerhouse in this jewelry industry. To achieve so much success, Mollie emphasizes how important it has been to Mollie Suarez and Natalie Nammour

Winter 2023 - 13 C U L T U R E leading lady have thick skin. “When you develop your own business, you’re offering the best you can for people, and when one person may not be happy, it hits you in the gut. Your stomach hurts. What I’ve learned is you can take these as opportunities to actually make that customer an even better customer by resolving the problem. But in the beginning, it hurts. You can’t let it be so personal. I have to remember that even today.” For anyone who has a plan of creating something of their own and making a living through it, Mollie emphasizes the importance of passion. “You will be successful if you are doing something you are completely passionate about. Passion is such an overused word, but just being completely enthralled by it so much that it wakes you up. It lights the fire inside of you. If you have that, then you will be successful because I believe it is your purpose. You have to listen to yourself. You have to trust yourself and trust that gut feeling. People will always be drawn to that. And remember, the only reason why someone else is doing it is because they are brave, not because they’re better.” Mollie is now married to the love of her life and has a blended family of five children. Visit her in person at Westshore Diamond in Tampa, Florida, or shop online at westshoredoamond.com. I feel super lucky that I got to witness and use my faith and see it manifest at such a young age because I truly found my purpose that year. Every day I’m so happy about it still to this day because I’ve achieved so much.

Winter 2023 - 14 C U L T U R E happenings 2/7 10AM MST Virtual KNOW Industry Call: Health & Wellness Join fellow KNOW members as we dive into an open conversation about all things health and wellness led by a fellow KNOW Elite Member in the industry. 2/22 9AM MST Virtual KNOWMember Connection Call Global and Elite members will come together to network with fellow highcaliber business women across North America 2/22 6PM EST KNOW Tampa Connections and Cocktails Learn from KNOW Women Sophia Rodriguez, Amy Nadeau and Alexis Quintal and get the style, hair and branding tips you need 3/7 9AM MST Virtual KNOW Industry Call: Social Media Hear from Vanessa Chaviano, KNOW Elite Member and Marketing Expert, on what you need to know about social media for your business 3/7 6PM MST Phoenix FOCU$ED: Styling for Your Higher Self Meet and learn from leading style experts on a hand-selected panel to teach you the science behind dressing for success 3/22 9AM MST KNOWMember Connection Call Global and Elite members will come together to network with fellow highcaliber business women across North America. 3/25 11AM EST KNOW Tampa Bubbly Brunch & Shop Dress in your best brunch attire and shop from our local curated pop-up market. 3/25 11AM MST KNOW Phoenix Bubbly Brunch & Shop Dress in your best brunch attire and shop from our local curated pop-up market. 3/28 6PM EST Charlotte FOCU$ED: Styling for Your Higher Self Meet and learn from leading style experts on a hand-selected panel to teach you the science behind dressing for success 3/28 6PM EST Tampa FOCU$ED: Styling for your Higher Self Meet and learn from leading style experts on a hand-selected panel to teach you the science behind dressing for success 4/1 11AM EST KNOW Charlotte Bubbly Brunch & Shop Dress in your best brunch attire and shop from our local curated pop-up market.

Winter 2023 - 15 C U L T U R E happenings 4/6 10AM MST KNOWMember Connection Call Global and Elite members will come together to network with fellow highcaliber business women across North America. 4/12 11AM MST KNOW Industry Call: Coaches and Masterminds Connect with fellow KNOW coaches and masterminds. Grow your network, get your questions answered, and learn from a fellow KNOW elite member Your membership grants you... MAJOR CONNECTIONS WITH KNOW GLOBAL + ELITE STATUS Your membership grants full access to local in-person events and digital meet-ups. Take advantage of one of our biggest member perks and meet likeminded women in your neighborhood and across the globe. Get involved and start fostering relationships today! Use the calendar above for the next quarters large format events, or browse the latest upcoming happenings on the website: theknowwomen.com April 23 - 25 KNOW Summit 2023 Join us for the experience of a lifetime in PHX at the FOUND:RE Hotel for the ultimate event curated for ambitious high-achieving women.

Winter 2023 - 16 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature COMMUNITY OUT OF CATASTROPHE KNOWWomen leading initial recovery efforts after local devastation caused by Hurricane Ian By Erin Daniels When Hurricane Ian was approaching, KNOW Women and SWFL natives, Marilyn Santiago and Talisha Faber, carried out their usual hurricane preparations, not expecting the full impact that had yet arrived. “ I grew up in Tampa and live in Fort Myers. My dad moved here when I was two, so I spent the weekends and summers in Fort Myers. I feel like we lived through every hurricane. You get a little complacent with that. When Hurricane Ian started coming our way after turning away from Tampa, the sensitivity and the pressure to prepare increased. But as a native, you still take things with a grain of salt. You just expect wind, rain, and some flooding” Talisha explained. Unexpected by many, making landfall on September 28th in SWFL, Hurricane Ian became the strongest category 4 hurricane to hit the region since Charley in 2004. Bringing loss and damage to the area, this treacherous storm left many with nothing. Putting an emotional and physical toll on locals, all anyone could do was take it day by day and rely on the community around them for assistance. This is where Marilyn and Talisha took initiative and helped those who needed it the most. It took around four to five days for the Salvation Army and the Red Cross to begin damage assessment and giving support. Marilyn told us “the first day or two after the hurricane was just assessing the damages to your house. We were told to not go out in the streets because of the damage and possible danger from fallen electrical

Winter 2023 - 17 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature cables. The first time I drove outside my house, it was ridiculous. There were yachts in the middle of the street piled up. It looked like a war zone.” After they were allowed to leave, Talisha and Marilyn immediately went boots to the group and began helping those that suffered the most damage and could not be reached by roads. Talisha’s son loves to cook and she noticed they had enough in their fridge to make around six lasagnas for the neighbors, but that was just the beginning. She connected with her neighbor, the manager of a local Publix, who took her to the store to get what she needed. Due to loss of electricity, there wasn’t any fresh meat available, but they grabbed frozen meatballs, pepperoni, and cheese. In the next few days, along with her kids, Talisha made and delivered 100 lasagnas to those in her community. At the same time, Marilyn was distributing a variety of items. “Every day there was a different need. Today, we need air mattresses. The next day we need water.” This is when Marilyn connected with KNOWCares to get the materials necessary to meet each need they discovered. “I want to take the opportunity to thank Juanice Oldman from KNOWCares, Bernadette Pello, and Carolynn Smith-Jones. They not only sent us care packages, but diapers, baby formula, and air mattresses. As new needs arised, they were on top of it and were sendingwhat was needed. That was pretty awesome.” Marilyn was the big orchestrator in a delivery day in Arcadia, a desolate area that was already in bad shape prior to the hurricane, that involved many KNOW women from around the community. She coordinated with Mercy Chefs, an organization that was feeding people on the Broadway Palm, and was able to partner with them and feed thousands in and around Arcadia. Everyday after that, they would drop off food anywhere. No matter where it was, they made sure that need was met. “People cried when you gave them a cup of coffee, or hot food. It was a very emotional time” Talisha shared. Talisha and her kids were passing out food to some of the trailer parks, reaching places where the roads and cars were demolished, and going out to elderly communities and those with lower income. This is when she connected with Marilyn to help her pack and deliver food. Talisha’s dad smoked meat and made pork sandwiches and over the next week, Talisha and her family, Marilyn, a community of volunteers and KNOW women, fed around 3000 people. When asked what propelled her to get out and help in such a time where it was easy to stay inside to feel safe, Talisha shared that she felt she had no choice. “We had the power and means to, but so many people didn’t. It was overwhelming and they didn’t knowwhere to start. I made some posts to encourage people to just begin. Everyone was in shock.” The win that came out of the hurricane for Talisha was that she made lifelong friends. These women showed up in a desperate time of need and made a real change in their community. “ I just wanted to highlight KNOWWomen because it has such a strong sense of community. The rallying. Even after the hurricane, I had Que from KNOWattend a suicide prevention walk that I was a part of. The hurricane, in some crazy way, propelled friendships and community within the KNOW group. It’s a huge highlight as to why you want to have KNOW as your squad.” For Marilyn, it was the initiative. “Everybody had a good initiative. They rebuilt a bridge in just three days. Everything was so fast. There was a lot of support and everyone had a ‘let’s make it work’ attitude.” Fort Myers still has a lot to rebuild from the hurricane and many people are still suffering from the immense damage caused; nonetheless, it is incredible to witness the power of a strong community come together, be selfless, and do what it takes to help those around them.

Winter 2023 - 18 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature After the devastation Hurricane Ian caused throughout the Southwest Florida region, we witnessed our KNOW SWFLwomen come together swiftly to rebuild their communities and assist those in need. Through distributing donations to feeding thousands, these women joined together through a horrible tragedy and came out with a greater sense of community, connection, and pride for their cities. In this issue, we are honored to spotlight sixteen women that you should KNOW and support in SWFL. Southwest Florida WOME N T O KNOW

Winter 2023 - 19 Ivette was born and raised in NY and moved to Florida at the age of 16. She attained her Master of Social Work from FGCU and dedicated 27 years of her life advancing the interests of vulnerable populations across SWFlorida. Her most rewarding work was serving at an agency where she was responsible for the oversight and programmatic planning of contracts in excess of $60 million, serving 7000 children across Florida. In 2018 she tapped into her entrepreneurial spirit, got licensed as a General Contractor, and started Her Homes LLC. Shortly after, she joined her cousins in strengthening FCC Services LLC, a family-owned and operated business building communities within SWFL one home at a time! ferrercustomcarpentry.com IVETTE GALARZA N EWSWO R T H Y special feature Victoria Paschke is the founder of Love Is Fur Ever Dog Rescue. After rescuing an emaciated and malnourished dog off the streets, vetting the pup, and finding a loving home, Victoria found a passion for doing it again. Victoria, a solo rescuer, has now led her ardent crew to have saved thousands. In addition, her rescue has helped many families with pets in need. This organization has become one of the best-known nonprofits in Southwest Florida, reaching globally; due to the fierce love of saving the worst of the worst cases. Victoria believes that every life has a purpose. She feels that even though many of these dogs are “beautifully broken,” with the proper love, medical treatment, rehabilitation, and training, they will live the life they have always deserved. Love Is Fur Ever Dog Rescue is a small but mighty rescue and has hopes to one day open their own facility. lifedogrescue.org VICTORIA PASCHKE

Winter 2023 - 20 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature For decades, Brooke has written advertising copy for some of the nation’s most notable fashion and beauty brands. Throughout her journey, she turned to exercising, meditation, and volunteering with children’s organizations to balance the demands of her career. The strength, confidence, and peace that exercise and meditation brought to her life were tangible—and she wanted to share it—with kids. With that vision, Camp Vitamin C™was born. Her mission: To create community, confidence, character, collaboration, and calm for children. Brooke is a Certified Meditation Instructor and Brand X Method™Youth Coach. Wife and mother of two, she teaches Movement, Strength &Meditation for children ages 5-10 at The Factory at Paradise Coast Sports Complex in Naples and The Traveling Therapist, LLC in Fort Myers. campvitaminc.com BROOKE L. DIAZ Corinne’s passion is to help others reignite that innate spark which makes them their best and guides them to reach their next level of self-defined success. As an award-winning marketer and coach, she genuinely enjoys assisting people in growing and thriving. With a successful career as a senior executive, leader, consultant, and mentor, traveling around the country and the world (while raising a family), there were times that Corinne had to understand and overcome what was holding her back and what was needed to reignite that “fire in her belly” so that she could continue to achieve, and live life fully. Corinne positively impacts the community through her coaching practice and extensive volunteer mentoring through SCORE. corinnewyard.com CORINNE WYARD

Winter 2023 - 21 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature Indera DeMine immigrated to the United States from Guyana in 2002. She completed her bachelor’s degree at Hunter College in New York City and earned her Juris Doctorate degree fromAve Maria School in 2012.Ms. DeMine immediately began practicing immigration law upon completion of law school and began working for an immigration firm in Fort Myers. In 2016, Ms. DeMine opened DeMine Immigration Law Firm, P.A.- an immigration-only firm with the goal of helping immigrants along their journey. As an immigrant herself and a naturalized citizen of the United States, Ms. DeMine is passionate about immigration law and has firsthand knowledge of the complexities of the immigration system. She understands the immigrant journey, can identify with her clients and offer solutions to their immigration case. Over the last decade, Ms. DeMine has worked in all areas of immigration cases to include investor visas, work visas, family petitions, naturalization, representation in immigration court proceedings, appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals, consular processing, waivers and more. demineimmigration.com INDERA DEMINE, ESQ Kerri Goldsmith is a senior financial advisor at HBKS® Wealth Advisors and has been with the firm since 2009. She is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional and holds the Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist℠ and Accredited Investment Fiduciary designations. One of the most rewarding aspects of her career is giving clients peace of mind through confidence. Her clients appreciate her warm and caring nature as she listens to their dreams and concerns, creates customized financial and investment plans, and keeps them on the path toward their goals. Through community involvement and as a part of KNOWWomen, Kerri connects with like-minded professionals for inspiration, collaboration, and shared success. She and her husband Leon can also be found enjoying the outdoors, traveling, and spending time with friends and family. hbkswealth.com KERRI GOLDSMITH

Winter 2023 - 22 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature Elizabeth Goldbach was born and raised on the Island of Puerto Rico. Educated at Regis College in Massachusetts and the University of the Sacred Heart in San Juan, Puerto Rico, since 2019, she has resided in Fort Myers. Being a pharma sales rep for 24+ years, she has been equipped with consulting skills required to be a business advisor in her new role at the Small Business Development Center. As a bilingual consultant, she assists entrepreneurs and business owners in all stages of their business with start-up assistance, business planning, and capital access. In addition, she is a real estate professional. Being an entrepreneur herself, she identifies with the business owners she helps. A person of extreme faith, she directs a dance ministry at her church, Step of Faith Ministries, where she helps dancers young and old use the art of dance as an expression of worship. fsbdcswfl.org ELIZABETH GOLDBACH Gina is pictured as her alter ego, Martha Horror the owner, creator, and tour guide extraordinaire from one of her businesses Marco Mystery and History. The tour was voted Best Sightseeing Tour on Marco Island 2 years running. Gina’s other businesses include Marco Office Supply in which she is co-owner with her husband (she reminds everyone to shop and support local!!) and Sisbarro Acting Studio where she writes, produces and directs three shows per year (main stage play, middle school production and a summer camp performance). In addition, she collaborates with the island YMCA and runs year programs for tots and elementary school age. She is launching her fourth business which will combine her recreation and theatrical skills to work with businesses, service organizations and nonprofits as fun, problem solving workshops. She is an author of two books. Having the best time of my life! sisbarroactingstudio.com GINA SISBARRO

Winter 2023 - 23 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature What the heck, it’s Krystal Keck! An Ohio Native who brings her expertise and team to SWFL. In 2002 she began her real estate career. Krystal Keck is the Founder and President of The KORE Team and is one of the most dedicated and committed real estate agents. Due to Military transfers, she has held a real estate license in Virginia, California, Ohio, and Florida. In addition to her degree, Krystal holds many designations/certifications; Military Relocation Professional (MRP), e-PRO, Pricing Strategy Advisor Certification (PSA), Commitment to Excellence (C2EX), Certified Real Estate Team Specialist (C-RETS), Resort & Second Home Property Specialist (RSPS) to name a few or a slew! If education, experience, and support in real estate are what you need, you need to know Krystal Keck and her crew! KrystalKeck.com KRYSTAL KECK Lisa has over 37 years in the banking industry... (not bad for an Eng Lit / Journalismmajor). Currently Vice President and Market Leader for BankUnited in Lee and Collier Counties. Her specialty is banking and lending to small businesses and providingwhite glove, concierge level of service. Many years of community service and involvement; has chaired and/or been a board member of: Bonita Springs Chamber of Commerce, Childrens Home Society, My Autism Connection, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast, South Lee Economic Development Council. Lisa lives in Estero and was a single mother of 2 incredible adopted kids, until she met the love of her life and married 2 years ago and plans to live happily ever after with her awesome family. Life Philosophies: there are many…To whom much is given…much is expected. It is all about love and fun and doing good in the world in whatever capacity you can. This is your life not a dress rehearsal – live it large / squeeze it dry. lportnoy@bankunited.com LISA PORTNOY HURM

Winter 2023 - 24 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature Marilyn Santiago knowledge, impressive resume, contagious smile and personality, helps spread awareness and advocate for a plethora of incredible causes and organizations. Marilyn currently owns two companies, Sunshine Integrated Solutions where she leverages her expertise in branded content, promotional campaigns and artist management and Creative Architectural Resin Products, which serves the construction industry, producing beautiful resin-based faux architectural elements, simulating wood, stone and coral. Marilyn’s has a strong passion and commitment to serving and supporting the community. She sits on several boards of local and national organizations. The City of Fort Myers appointed Santiago to the Special Events Advisory Board and in 2020 became a Trustee at Hodges University. As a survivor of domestic violence, Marilyn helps organizations that empower women, the bullied and vulnerable children. She is currently the chairperson for the 2023 Arts for Act Gala, raising funds to eliminate domestic violence and human trafficking. @themarilynsantiago MARILYN SANTIAGO Mary Colina-Fowler is an ambitious, service-oriented attorney whose goal is to be accessible to all clients. She is personally involved in every case, from the investigation and information-gathering stages through trial. Mary was born and raised in Cuba, where she studied secondary education. She moved to New Brunswick, Canada in 1997. In 2008 Mary relocated to Naples with her husband and two children. She continued her studies at Ave Maria School of Law, earning a Juris Doctor cum laude in 2015. In law school, Mary interned with Guardian ad Litem attorneys, the Staff Attorney’s Office, and was a certified legal intern with the State Attorney’s Office. She worked for two years as a tutor with the Research, Writing, and Advocacy department. She also volunteered with the school’s Immigration and Human Trafficking clinics and was a member of the Ave Maria School of Law’s Moot Court Board. When she is not working, you can find Mary spending time with family and friends, volunteering with a local animal rescue group or participating in community events. colina.law MARY COLINA-FOWLER

Winter 2023 - 25 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature Talisha has had a 17-year career in financial services, top executive talent acquisitions, and commercial real estate. She is a member of the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce Women in Business and the Rotary Club of Fort Myers, where she is a regular speaker on ‘personal and professional brand awareness”. She serves on the Board of Directors/Treasurer for Our Mother’s Home, a local nonprofit that provides a safe and nurturing environment for young moms (ages 11-21) in foster care and their babies and has been a “Dress for Success” speaker and mentor for many women. Talisha has played a significant role at Valerie’s House close to its inception and is now a committee member and Mom at Canterbury School in Fort Myers. Talisha has been selected as a “Know”Women among the top elite women to know, a UnitedWay Loaned Executive and allocations teammember, junior achievement Hall of Fame advisory board member, and is a regular volunteer at her local Next Level church and food bank along with her father, and her two beautiful children. @Talisha0924 TALISHA FABER Teresa M. Araque is Vice President of Marketing and External Communication. Teresa brings more than 25 years of public relations and marketing experience. Over the years, she has served as a board member, director, and leader for several non-profit and civic organizations in the Southwest Florida region. A first-generation college graduate, Teresa earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism with specialties in sports and feature writing from Ball State University, Muncie, Ind. Personally, she has an eclectic love of music of many genres and enjoys traveling and riding rollercoasters. Most importantly, she is the proud Mom of Emma, 22, and Jared, 19 Hodges.edu TERESA ARAQUE

Winter 2023 - 26 N EWSWO R T H Y special feature Vicky Guidi is the President and Founder of MedPulse Healthcare Consultants and Pulse Empowerment. With 20 years of experience in Revenue Cycle Management, she has a diverse background in revenue management, operations, and leadership development. Vicky holds a Bachelor of Science in Health Service Administration and a Master’s in Business Administration. She has held several leadership roles in large healthcare institutions before creating her own company in 2012. Vicky prides herself in her ability to develop and empower leaders. As a female leader of diverse teams, she feels that leading by example is crucial. Pulse Empowerment was founded because Vicky wanted to share her knowledge to develop emerging leaders to become great. She’s passionate about helping other women do the same through her empowerment and leadership coaching - to use their inner power to transform their lives. pulse-empowerment.com VICKY GUIDI Jessica Diaz, is an award-winning agent skilled in all aspects of Southwest Florida Property Sales. She guides buyers and sellers who are strategic about building their real estate portfolio and enhancing their lifestyle. Skillful, savvy and unfailingly clever, she is a breath of fresh air in the Naples real estate scene. Jessica has a habit of making the impossible possible wherever she goes. She’s honored to be the face sellers choose to represent their most prized asset and the confident guide buyers seek out to lead them to their dream home. diazsells.com JESSICA DIAZ

Winter 2023 - 27 By KRISTINA RODRIGUEZ INVST | KARR SOLUTIONS Owning a business fills up your life. Your identity is tied to it. It is a great source of pride and joy. It keeps you busy and fulfilled. It provides you with a great living. It doesn’t cheat on you. It doesn’t betray you. It’s loyal and steadfast. It’s the one place you can go where, in many ways, you think you are totally in control. You have status and respect. The business is a vehicle for expression of your vision and aspirations. – Christopher M Snider “Walking to Destiny” AND staying busy in your business also gives you an excuse to ignore the personal things that are nagging at you, poking you in the heart. You’re too busy to deal with that soft stuff. You’ll deal with it at another time. Right now, you have a problem in the business that you need to solve… or an idea that you HAVE to implement…. Sound familiar? As a business owner we spend a lot of our time on and in our business. We put all our time, energy and resources into our pride and joy. My question is what are you doing to prepare for what’s next? How do you shift to start focusing on what’s most important, YOU! Here are three questions I ask every business owner: 1. What personal purpose is the business serving for you? What is your personal purpose for starting this business? It all started with an idea that you had to change something you didn’t like, or thought it could be better. Or maybe the personal purpose is to make money and change your family’s wealth trajectory. Whatever the personal purpose is. It is important to understand. This is how the world will see what your passion is. 2. Do you have an exit strategy? Most business owners do not think about how they want to exit the business as soon as they start. They are excited to launch their new baby out into the world. This is a very important question. Because how you want to exit will determine the best way for you to set up and run your business. Build your WEALTH Discover your WORTH S OC I E T E protect your assets 3. Do you have rules and strategies in place for your business and personal finances? Most of us do not like rules, I know, AND having rules and strategies in place help keep us on track to reach our goals in life and with our wealth. As business owners what we know best is how to do our business. We don’t always think about the impact that our personal finances have on our business. Think about this, if you had your personal finances under control wouldn’t that free up some of the stress you may have in your day-today life. Imagine how you would feel if you knew that you were taking the steps to make your business more profitable by understanding your wealth gap, profit gap, and value gap. This is where you start. Discover what these answers are for you. Invst, LLC (“Invst”) is an SEC registered investment advisor with offices in Indianapolis, IN and Tampa, FL. Invst does not make any representations or warranties as to the accuracy, timeliness, suitability, completeness, or relevance of any information provided in reporting, whether linked to Invst or incorporated herein, and takes no responsibility therefor. All such information is provided solely for convenience purposes only and all users should be guided accordingly. Invst offers a variety of advisory services—which include financial planning, consulting, and investment management services—with a focus on educating, guiding and counseling clients toward reaching their full financial potential. Prior to Invst rendering any of the advisory services described herein, clients are required to enter into one or more written agreements with Invst setting forth the relevant terms and conditions of the advisory relationship (the “Advisory Agreement”). MEET HER AT KNOW SUMMIT 2023

Winter 2023 - 28 S OC I E T E partnership A Perfect Pair KNOWWomen and Sparkle Hustle Grow Announce New Partnership KNOWWomen and Sparkle Hustle Grow are excited to announce they have entered into a global partnership, though this relationship is far from new. Julie Ball, Founder of the subscription box and online community for female entrepreneurs, was featured in Volume 2 of the KNOW Asheville City Book. Though she is no longer the owner, when she exited in 2022, and sold her business to Carol Gavhane and her husband, she told Carol that KNOW was an organization she needed to be a part of and connected her with Founder and CEO, Sarah Benken. Carol has been an entrepreneur for five years and prior to Sparkle Hustle Grow she had an intentional jewelry business, Asha Blooms, that was born out of a hard time in her and her husband’s lives. Carol had been working in the corporate world, but this difficult time compelled her to give others strength and hope because that is what she had needed in her journey. Asha Blooms allowed her and her husband to heal and they decided it was time to move into the next season of their lives. They started brainstormingwhat to do next. “Where do we go from here? Do we start something else? Do we go back to corporate? Do we buy something? Then, we physically leaned into that. We looked at businesses to buy. What would that look like? How do you even buy a business? We had no idea.” When they settled with the idea of buying a business, they decided they wanted to go the e-commerce route and began looking at what was available on Biz Buy Sell, a platform for selling and buying established companies. This is where they saw a listing for a subscription box for female entrepreneurs. “I was super excited and we were pumped to get more information about Sparkle Hustle Grow, not knowing that it was actually Sparkle Hustle Grow at the very beginning. I was a woman in entrepreneurship, consuming all of the information out there: podcasts, courses, books, networking, getting every bit of education I could to further my business at the time. And I loved it. I’m such a fan of personal growth and development, so when this listing came up, I was like, this is totally in my wheelhouse. It’s so perfect.” Carol and her husband began the process of buying a business, an experience that was new for the both of them. Along the way, they learned about the representation and lawyers to have, the right questions to ask, and when they interviewed with Julie Ball, it felt like a good fit on both sides. Six months in and Carol is loving every part of Sparkle Hustle Grow. “I CAROL GAVHANE

Winter 2023 - 29 S OC I E T E partnership love, love, love this business because I’m living it every day. I want to give our customers the biggest bang for their buck. The box is $67 a month. You get a book, a tech gadget, stationery, and office supplies. It’s about five plus items and it’s a surprise” In addition to the box, what excites Carol the most is the experts she brings to the group. She pairs the book with a guest author and they have an incredible lineup for the next six months. They kicked off the new year with Jadah Selner and moving forward are featuring Gabriella Galante, Amy Porterfield, Lisa Bilyeu, Candace Nelson, and Rachel Luna. She describes this new season as being exciting, surprising, and challenging. Very different from her previous business, Carol had to learn overnight inventory management, operations, how to pack boxes, and a new type of labor unlike that used for jewelry making. She mentions there are people helping her and her husband at every step of the way. Moving forward, her mission is to give opportunities to Sparkle Hustle Grow subscribers to showcase their expertise within the platform. ”That’s the big vision, making our subscribers feel seen and heard and edifying them on a bigger stage. Let’s get some more badass women entrepreneurs out there. Let’s scream their names from the rooftops!” Regarding the KNOWand Sparkle Hustle Grow partnership, Carol is excited to meet and get to know some high-caliber women who are making it happen in their fields and build a mutual relationship between both communities. We have so much up our sleeves with Sparkle Hustle Grow and can’t wait for you to experience the incredible collaboration. Use code ‘THEKNOW’ to get 50% off your first Sparkle Hustle Grow subscription box. MEET HER AT KNOW SUMMIT 2023

Winter 2023 - 30 S OC I E T E enhance your brand YOURPRESS RELEASE Impresses No One Five better ways to drive profitability through publicity By NICOLE PETERNEL REIN COMMUNICATIONS From inception and launch to scaling and exit, public relations should play a vital role in every stage and strategy of your business. Universally, PR is about two things: raising visibility and building credibility-two crucial elements in amplifying your success. Unless you are Apple or Amazon, a press release about your newest hire or cool product isn’t going to cut it. You need to create a communications strategy that not only reflects your goals but includes publicity that will get you noticed. While working with a credible PR pro can certainly move mountains, the following five tips will help get you started. HAVE A BLOG? REPURPOSE THAT CONTENT Examine what you have already created, identify the relevant audience, and then refresh it for media pitches, byline articles and speaking engagements. You don’t always have to start from scratch. BECOME FAMILIAR WITH LESSER KNOWN HOLIDAYS No matter what your industry, there are holidays you can align with your business. Whether it’s National Lipstick Day and you founded a cosmetics company or National Cookie Day and you own a bakery, on a slow news day, it could be just the quirky but relevant content journalists are looking for. TAKE CENTERSTAGE Time to overcome your fears and welcome the idea of speaking on stage. It’s not often that you get a chance to control your message in front of a captive audience who is looking to you for guidance, so look at these opportunities as the perfect way to build both your visibility and authority. Who knows? You might begin your journey at a rotary club and eventually land a Ted talk! It just takes practice and persistence. NOMINATE YOURSELF (or ask someone to do it for you) We get it-bragging about yourself feels weird. But nominating yourself (or enlisting a friend to do it for you) is the perfect way to get your name out there while also building credibility. Plus, being connected with a group of fellowwinners can also offer fantastic networking opportunities. Either way, you will be able to give your parents another reason to brag about you to their friends. ALIGN WITH THE NEWS CYCLE Whether you are looking to book a speaking engagement or land media coverage, relevance and timeliness are key. Look for ways to share your unique perspective as it relates to hot topics and trends. One easy thing to do is to set up google news alerts by entering your industry keywords. When you see topics you can speak, draft a quick email, identify outlets and strike while the iron is hot. MEET HER AT KNOW SUMMIT 2023

Winter 2023 - 31 S OC I E T E wellbeing Feminine Wound By BIRD MEJIA | BIRDMEJIA.COM How Cacao Can Heal Your You do, do, do. Give, give, give. Always on the go, go, go. Almost like a superhero, you have done amazing things in your life. What you might not realize is that doing so much and giving so much is part of the wounding of the feminine. The divine masculine is about doing and giving. The divine feminine is about BEing and RECEIVING. Scientists are proving that trauma can live in the dna up to 14 generations. Women, of all cultures and lineages, have suffered great traumas over the past generations. This has caused an imbalance in women living lives that are balanced with BEing and Receiving. In my story, I was shown in a vision a horrific trauma that happened in my lineage on my mother’s indigenous Mexican side. It was about seven generations ago, and I was shown how the trauma was passed down from one generation of women to the next, and showed up in the trauma my mother experienced. My mother’s trauma showed up in a cancer that killed her only 35 days after being diagnosed. My mother’s trauma also showed up in the mother wound I experienced as a result of my mother’s unhealed wounds. It served as the root of my own painful 23year narcissistic marriage and my own personal struggles with depression, anger and self-worth. When the original trauma happened in my lineage, the wisdom, knowledge and intuitive knowing of my female ancestors was severed. In this severing was the tradition of my ancestors’ use of cacao to open and heal the heart. The modern day, “wounded” version of cacao is what we know today as chocolate. I call this the wounded version because chocolate was created by adding sugar and milk to cacao and separating the natural fat content, which contains most of cacao’s powerful healing properties. Most chocolate today is also now produced in cacao fields in Africa using child labor that has been compared to child slavery. The unwounded cacao is like my female ancestry before the wounding of the feminine. It is SO powerful. Cacao is a beautiful heart opener. Cacao not only helps heal the heart, but it also helps with depression and anxiety. It is powerfully energizing and nourishing, and assists in balancing body, mind, and spirit, improves mood, heightens creativity and enhances your intuition. How does cacao help heal the wounds of the feminine in your lineage? Trauma usually breaks one’s heart. Or blocks it. Or builds walls around the heart. A blocked or broken heart is not able to fully love. Or fully live. Truly LIVING means we, as women, get to just BE. It means we get to RECEIVE. We get to rest. We get to create. These are all the signs of a balanced, healthy divine feminine. I use cacao in my Healing the Mother & Father Wound retreats. It gently opens the heart to be able to receive and just be. You can also use cacao on your own, in your own time and space and home. You are in your power when you allow the feminine to heal. Cacao can become a beautiful bridge in this magical journey of reclaiming your true feminine power. *Look for fair trade, ceremonial grade cacao. I workwith cacao fromKokoleka Collective (kokolekacollective.comUse code OPENMYHEART for 15%discount) MEET HER AT KNOW SUMMIT 2023

Winter 2023 - 32 S OC I E T E get to know Souad Dreyfus with Open Arms Don’t limit your aspirations. Envision a future that exceeds your wildest dreams...that anything is possible if you believe in yourself and have the determination to see it through. Q&A Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started? I was a driven 23-year-old when I embarked on my journey to the United States fromMorocco in 1998, in pursuit of greater opportunities. My move to the US proved to be a defining moment in my life and career, opening up new doors and possibilities. While I was attending college, I had the opportunity to work at a cafeteria, where I was eventually recruited by a fertility specialist to work as his front desk receptionist. This was my introduction to the fascinating field of third-party reproduction, and after three years of working in a fertility clinic, I decided to venture out on my own and founded Open Arms in June of 2003. What do you think makes your company stand out? Our distinctiveness in the industry lies in our two decades of experience, duringwhich we have assisted couples and individuals from all over the world. We pride ourselves on our honesty, transparency, and most importantly, our empathetic approach to understanding and addressing the struggles of our clients. This approach has earned us a reputation for excellence and has set us apart from our competitors. What piece of advice has impacted you the most? What if it turned out better than you can imagine? What was the “Aha Moment” that led to the creation for your current company? The realization that one in eight couples struggle with conceiving was a profound awakening for me. Witnessing the private pain and difficulties faced by those struggling with infertility only strengthened my resolve to be a resource and offer all the support I can to my clients as they navigate this challenging journey. I am honored to walk alongside them, providing guidance and comfort at every step.